Frank Iero And The Future Violence // Heaven Is A Place, This Is A Place // EP Review
“Heaven is a place, this is a place” is the new EP from emo veteran Frank Iero. Famed for his work with cult-heroes My Chemical Romance, Frank has proved to be the most prolific out of all of his former bandmates. Continuing with the third incarnation of his solo project (as the ‘Future Violents’) comes to a companion EP to 2019s Barriers – with the releases under this name change focusing less on the gory side of his songwriting, “Heaven is a place…” emphasises Frank’s newfound maturer approach to his work.
On the A-side, Franks trademark hoarse vocals edge on a scream on emo rock bangers ‘Violence’ and ‘Sewerwolf’ with lyrics that are as honest and as sad as ever. Featuring his familiar heavy, driving riffs that helped build MCR’s sound, these opening tracks follow the straightforward rock and roll song structures that made his previous full-length release so popular and are sure to be live set staples when gigs and festivals return.
Flipping the EP over, however, taking listeners by surprise comes a stripped-back cover of R.E.Ms classic ‘Losing My Religion’. Haunting mandolin, soft drums and the combined vocals of Frank and guest singer Kayleigh Goldsworthy result in a beautifully eery rendition. With Frank repeatedly hearing this song during the recovery of his 2016 road accident, his words feel more heartfelt than ever on this cover.
Ending things on a questionable high, the aptly titled ‘Record Ender’ rounds the EP off with a full-blown, overdriven ballad. The slow-burner transitions to huge, jolting stab that amp’s up the intensity at the song’s peak, with Frank’s yelling and floods of feedback bringing everything to a cacophonous close. With a run time of just under 7 minutes, ‘Record Ender’ highlights the maturity in his songwriting with the use of more winding, instrumental passages that build tension throughout the song. Emotions run high on this closer as it feels like the end of an era for this incarnation of the band. Is a fourth name change on the horizon?
‘Heaven Is A Place, This Is A Place’ is available everywhere on the 15th of January via UNFD.